Motorist rescues pizza and wings from burning vehicle, DNR officer says
The Hubbard County Sheriff’s Office deputies who responded located the owner/driver of the vehicle nearby and he was subsequently arrested for suspicion of DUI.
Here is the weekly report from Department of Natural Resources conservation officers in northwest Minnesota and adjacent areas of northern Minnesota for Monday, Feb. 6.
District 1 - Baudette area
CO Ben Huener (Roseau) checked anglers on Lake of the Woods and assisted with the Warroad snowmobile safety class. Anglers are reminded to renew their fish house license and display applicable numbers on the exterior of the shelter. Fishing has remained slow on Lake of the Woods.
CO Tony Hams (Warroad North) spent time during the week checking area ice anglers, working on equipment maintenance and following up on complaints. Violations encountered were possessing dressed fillets on the water, angling without a license and no fishing license in possession.
CO Coby Fontes (Baudette East) spent the week checking ice anglers on Lake of the Woods and Upper Red Lake. Enforcement action was taken on several angling infractions, including the possession of a walleye overlimit and several extra-line violations. Fontes also helped lead a snowmobile safety course to a group of around 40 youths in Warroad in conjunction with CO Huener.
CO Jeremy Woinarowicz (Thief River Falls West) taught the law and ethics portion of the youth snowmobile safety class in Thief River Falls, represented the Enforcement Division at a career fair, and responded to a call of a pickup stuck on an area snowmobile trail. He monitored area angling and snowmobiling activity. Enforcement action was taken for angling without a license, possession of illegal-length northern pike and no helmet on a juvenile ATV passenger.
CO Demosthenes Regas (Blackduck South) reports checking anglers on area lakes and monitoring snowmobile trail activity. Regas reports the trails are still in great condition, and activity was high with the warming weather during the weekend. Time was spent assisting with officer water survival training at the State Patrol Academy at Camp Ripley. While returning from Camp Ripley, Regas came upon an unoccupied vehicle on fire. He and other concerned motorists stopped and fought the fire until the fire department arrived on scene. While Regas and other motorists fought to extinguish the fire, the vehicle owner appeared on-scene and appeared surprised his car was on fire. Against advice from Regas and the other motorists, the vehicle owner went into the burning vehicle to recover some personal items. Regas later learned the vehicle owner went into the vehicle to save his pizza and wings. The Hubbard County Sheriff’s Office deputies who responded located the owner/driver of the vehicle nearby and he was subsequently arrested for suspicion of DUI. Violations encountered and addressed included angling and dark house spearing license violations and failure to display snowmobile registration information/decal.
CO Nicholas Prachar (Blackduck North) reports good snowmobile trail conditions. Time was spent working angling and snowmobile activity. Enforcement action was taken for operating in prohibited areas, failure to display registration, youth under 18 with no helmet and for a “snowdog” machine being operated on a state grant-in-aid trail.
Warroad South – vacant.
Baudette West – vacant.
Thief River Falls East – vacant.
Karlstad – vacant.
District 2 - Bemidji area
CO Tom Hutchins (Crookston) reports working a snowmobile enforcement detail in Becker County with other neighboring COs. Time was also spent taking miscellaneous wildlife-related complaint calls. Anglers and ATV operators were also contacted.
CO Brice Vollbrecht (Bemidji #1) monitored angling activity on area lakes. Time was spent patrolling snowmobile and cross-country ski trails. Complaints of individuals feeding deer in the CWD zone were taken.
CO Jake Swedberg (Detroit Lakes) spent this week catching up on old cases and checking snowmobilers during the Midnite Riders Old Timers ride. Swedberg was assisted by many area conservation officers during the ride. Overall, most riders were able to follow the laws. Swedberg also assisted at the State Patrol Academy, instructing their cadets in water survival tactics.
CO Steve Chihak (Moorhead) spent the week working sport fishing and snowmobile enforcement. A snowmobile enforcement detail was worked over the weekend with other district officers. Time was also spent giving a law and ethics presentation for a snowmobile safety class in Hitterdal.
CO Angie Warren (Mahnomen) worked angling activity, with anglers having fair to good success. Snowmobile activity was worked on area lakes and trails. Follow up on open cases was completed. Information was provided on fishing regulations and fish house removal dates.
CO Bill Landmark (Pelican Rapids) spent the week wrapping up a background investigation. Time was also spent on snowmobile patrol during the annual Old Timers Run with six other conservation officers. Their main focus was on safety and alcohol enforcement. The most concerning safety issue encountered was failure to stop at stop signs or failure to stop before crossing a roadway. Snowmobile operators are reminded that they must come to a complete stop before crossing any public roadway. Enforcement action was taken for numerous snowmobile violations, including illegally modified exhaust, failure to yield prior to crossing a roadway, registration violations, failure to transfer snowmobile title and operating while intoxicated.
CO Al Peterson (Osage) worked snowmobile enforcement and checked anglers and shelter law compliance. Fishing action was mostly slow, and trail conditions were good.
CO Brett Fox (Bemidji #2) spent the week doing snowmobile and ice fishing enforcement. Lake Itasca was a popular spot for anglers, though not many fish were caught. Fox assisted other officers with the Old Timers Run snowmobile event. Enforcement action was taken for various snowmobile-related violations, including registration and title transfer issues.
Bagley – vacant.
District 3 - Fergus Falls area
CO Andrew Goodman (Fergus Falls) continued enforcement efforts of snowmobile and angling activity. A big temperature jump and sunshine were much needed for everyone wanting to get back to their outdoor activities. Trail and ice conditions were good for the weekend, with angling success picking up slightly. Goodman worked the annual Midnite Riders Older Timers event in Lake Park, where many vintage snowmobiles were on display and took to the trails. Enforcement action for the week included snowmobile registration, equipment, trail pass and general operation violations, in addition to a DWI arrest.
CO Tricia Plautz (Henning) conducted aeration permits and checked ice anglers and snowmobile riders. Plautz worked with area volunteer safety instructors getting upcoming firearms safety classes scheduled and supplies ordered. A local fishing derby was attended, with good attendance and fundraising efforts by the local club.
CO Ryan Brown (Elbow Lake) reports decent fishing success throughout the week. It slowed as the weather warmed. Shooting from the road and trespass-related complaints were fielded. Enforcement actions this week included taking fish without a license, no license in personal possession and possession of marijuana.
CO Shane Osborne (Evansville) checked anglers, snowmobile riders and fish houses. A reminder to anglers that fish houses left unattended need identification on them (a driver’s license number, DNR number or full name and address). The lettering needs to be 2 inches in height.
CO Mitch Lawler (Alexandria) reports working heavy ice fishing activity all over the Douglas County area this week. Several anglers were cited for different violations, including using extra lines, no shelter license, and an overlimit of sunfish. Several interviews were conducted regarding the 2022 firearms deer season, resulting in multiple citations for using invalid licenses and illegal party hunting.
CO Felicia Znajda (Osakis) reports an increase in snowmobiling and angling activity over the weekend with the warmer weather. Fishing reports remained poor throughout the weekend. Extra lines, unattended lines, drug activity and other various violations were enforced.
CO Emily Douvier (Morris) helped with miscellaneous district and training work. A background investigation and deer farm inspection were also completed.
CO Daniel Baumbarger (Glenwood) reports enforcement efforts for the week were concentrated on checking anglers and snowmobile operators. Baumbarger inspected aeration systems and followed up on cases from the deer season. Calls were fielded about injured swans and coyote-hunting regulations.
District 4 - Walker area
CO Adam Seifermann (Staples) spent time checking anglers and patrolling by snowmobile. Enforcement action was taken for various snowmobile-related offenses.
CO Jordan Anderson (Wadena) spent time on area lakes and trails. Equipment maintenance was completed and a snowmobile safety class was taught in cooperation with the Hubbard County Sheriff’s Office.
CO Corey Sura (Remer) spent time checking angling activity on area lakes and patrolling on local snowmobile trails. Trail activity was extremely busy over the weekend, and compliance amongst riders was quite impressive. Sura also worked on completing a case from the past deer season. Violations encountered during the week included expired registration on ATVs and snowmobiles, no shelter licenses, fishing with extra lines and a sunfish overlimit on a special regulations lake.
CO Jacqueline Hughes (Longville) checked angling and snowmobile activity. Enforcement action was taken on no shelter license and failure to display shelter license.
CO Michael Cross (Lake George) worked ice angling and snowmobile patrol. He also followed up on deer hunting cases from the fall. Fishing remained slow overall throughout the week, which featured cold weather. Cross also attended emergency medical technician refresher training. Enforcement action was taken for angling, snowmobile and deer hunting violations.
CO Patrick McGowan (Walker) patrolled Cass and Crow Wing counties for snowmobile riding and fishing activity. McGowan also worked the Crosslake area for Crosslake Days, and there was a high amount of snowmobile activity. Enforcement action was taken for extra lines, angling license violations, drug paraphernalia, snowmobile registration and snowmobile speed.
CO Mark Mathy (Cass Lake) primarily checked anglers and snowmobile trails. Some time was spent working on Bear Committee-related items. Enforcement action was taken for driving motor vehicles on a snowmobile trail, angling violations, and snowmobile violations.
ATV rec officer – vacant.